To mark the 117th anniversary of Panama's Independence, David A. De Leon S, Charge d'Affaires of The Embassy of the Republic of Panama in Việt Nam, wrote this message for Việt Nam News.
On behalf of the government of the Republic of Panama, I would like to extend our warmest congratulation to all Panamanian citizens living in Việt Nam on the occasion of the 117th anniversary of our independence and the 45th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between our two nations.
I would also like to extend our greetings to the hard working and friendly people of Việt Nam.
According to new reports from the International Monetary Fund, Panama will post estimated GDP growth of 4 per cent in 2021 after contracting this year due to the COVID-19 pandemic. This growth is forecast to be accompanied by low inflation and a strong fiscal performance.
Nevertheless, Panama's economy will be one of the least hit by the pandemic in the western hemisphere thanks to the growth of its ports. During these tough times, Panama Canal services and the financial sector have never closed and we will continue to focus on providing our services to the world.
Regarding foreign attraction, in the past 13 years more than 140 multinational companies like Procter & Gamble, Dell, 3M, Caterpillar, Sony, Yamaha, Maersk and Unilever have established regional headquarters in Panama (Panama Pacifico), as have international organisations such as the United Nations Regional Headquarters and the Humanitarian Regional Hub. These organisations have provided assistance to countries in the region during the COVID-19 pandemic and helped to receive and dispatch Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) and other types of essential sanitation and healthcare facilities to fight the virus.
A view of Panama City. — Photo courtesy of the embassy
As the Hub of the Americas connecting both hemispheres, Panama is reopening Tocumen International Airport for tourists to drive the tourism industry with our flagship airline Copa Airlines.
It's not an easy task, but we are positive that the next year will bring us more opportunities to conduct official visits between Panama and Viet Nam. This long story of friendship has been consolidated over the years through co-operation from both sides.
In the maritime sector, this year our country is celebrating the 103rd anniversary of the establishment of Panama’s Ship Registry, which continues to be the biggest registry of vessels in the world. Also we celebrate 23 years since the opening of our Consulate General in Hồ Chí Minh City. In this regard, we have teamed up with the city in the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic and worked together with Hà Nội to celebrate the 45th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between Panama and Việt Nam. All this is promoting more solid and closer relations between our two nations.
An aerial view of the Panama Canal. — Photo courtesy of the embassy
We hope that this celebration with the support of different Vietnamese authorities, will be extended to 2021 because all our plans to celebrate these special events together have been postponed due to the world health situation.
Panama will always continue to cooperate in bilateral and multilateral arenas with Việt Nam to further strengthen our common ties and advance our shared values, while promoting the resolution of conflicts in a peaceful way, human rights, and an open trading system. — VNS